Sunday, September 7, 2008

Garden Visitors

Normally I don’t like the harsh light of the afternoon. It washes out the colors of the flowers that I am trying to photograph. I much prefer the softer light of the morning. Today, I discovered that bright light works really well when photographing critters.

Whenever I do a large shoot, usually at a public garden, but occasionally at home like today when I took over 50 pictures, there is always one photo that really grabs me. It’s not usually the one that I think will be the best when I am shooting. Rather, it’s more likely to be one that I took quickly without thinking too much about it. And it’s not always just one. Sometimes I find two or three really good photos in the batch. I call them the Photo of the Day. And each year, of all those Photos of the Day, there’s always one that stands out. It becomes the iconic photo for that year.

This photo of a Delaware Skipper on my butterfly bush is definitely in the running for best of the best. When I took it, I didn’t think that it was going to be any good. He was near the top of the bush (which is taller than my shed), the light was bright, and the wind was blowing. I liked the way he looked silhouetted against the sky and took a quick shot. It wasn’t until I uploaded it to my computer and did a little cropping that I saw how great this shot is. Somehow I managed to get him with his proboscis fully extended, the light just right and minimal wind. Perfecto!

Here are some visitors to my Eupatorium:

Is that pollen or mites on him?

Too bad it was so breezy. This would have been a candidate for Photo of the Day if it had been in better focus.

This is the first time that I’ve been able to get a picture of a Silver Spotted Skipper with its wings unfolded.

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